When you think of a Horror Movie Director you get visions of John Carpenter, Wes Craven, Clive Barker and of course Steven Speilberg. Steven Speilberg you might ask? Well some of his more recent movies have been less than horrifying besides for their lack luster content, but he has made some pretty terrifying films to start.
His 1975 release of âJawsâ still makes me tread only so deep in the oceanâs waters. AÂ masterful film that even watched by todayâs standards of special effects is still awe-inspiring
âE.T. The Extra-terrestrialâ (1982) is far from a horror flick, per say but show it to any pre-teen and I assure you, they will wake up with a night mare the time tell gauge that you saw a scary movie. Same goes for his Jurassic Park movies, maybe not nightmare inducing to the adult intellect, but to an 11 year old, enough to send them straight to Mom and Dadâs bed in the middle of the night.
Ok, moving on to the real masters, John Carpenter has done a lot of horror movies and established himself with the twice repeated Halloween series.
Carpenter actually started off shooting home movies in the 60âs and moving into short films with such titles as âTerror from Spaceâ & âRevenge of the Colossal Beastsâ his 1st feature length debut was a science fiction movie/dark comedy âDark Starâ which grew from a project he was doing as a student at the University of Southern California.Â Carpenter later filmed âAssault on Precinct 13â circa 1976.
Before âHalloweenâ Carpenter did a TV land project called âSomebodyâs Watching Me! 1978â I vaguely remember seeing this as a young boy and scared the âyou know whatâ out of me. So much so I remember finishing the whole movie before my parents (playing cards with friends) realized what I was watching.
I was so sickened by it as my father carried me upstairs to go to sleep, I made my own âExorcistâ scene all over his shirtâŚ sorry Dad!
1978 also birthed his notorious âHalloweenâ which was quickly viewed by the masses and described in detail to me as a young lad with huge curiosity as now I was hooked on Horror and wanted every gory detail of the film as described by my Motherâs friend to my Motherâs objection.
âHalloweenâ was produced for a meager $320,000 but grossed an astounding $60 million in the USA alone which was still a staggering amount for the day probably close to $200 million in todayâs market.
âHalloweenâ was also an American break through for a song called âTubular Bellsâ by Mike Oldfield. The famous title track to the movie gave Virgin Music (Richard Branson) the American break through they needed to launch Virgin Music in the American market. Thus launching Virgin Music to new heights and eventually making Richard Branson a Billionaire giving him the much needed seed money for his Virgin Airways. All do to âHalloweenâ and Carpenter.
Carpenter joined forces with Stephen King to film Kingâs novel âChristineâ in 1983 another Horror classic and often confused on who wrote and or directed.Â Carpenter jumped around in genresÂ with hits like âEscape from New Yorkâ 1981 âStarmanâ 1984 where the most memorable line from the movie, after Jeff Bridges is an Alien from another world that is re-incarnated as a womanâs dead husband observes her driving, later to take a spin behind the wheel.
He comes to a yellow light and floors the gas (previously watching his wife do this) races through the busy intersection and causes a pile up accident. His wife screams at him for him to only reply âGreen means go, Red means Stop and Yellow Means go Very Fast!â killer lineâŚ
âBig Trouble in Little Chinaâ 1986, âPrince of Darknessâ 1987 âThey Liveâ 1988 âMemoirs of an Invisible Manâ 1992 then Carpenter headed back into his born-in genre âBody Bagsâ 1993, âVampiresâ 1998, âGhost of Marsâ 2001. Carpenter is always working on projects with some possible releases for 2010 and rumored re-makes.
Wes Craven has produced some memorable films as âThe Hills have Eyesâ 1977, âThe Serpent and The Rainbowâ 1988, âThe People Under the Stairsâ 1991, âNew Nightmareâ 1994, âDracula 2000â 2000 he started off with a Masters Degree from John Hopkins University in Writing and Psychology (an interesting combination)Â he actually took a job as a teacher, then a short stint as a taxi driver before landing jobs as a sound editor.
Wes made the film âThe Last House on the Leftâ 1972 which was a big success leading him into âThe Hills Have Eyesâ 1977. Both the former and the latter have since been remade with more up to date glitz and Hollywood slasher glamour.
His probably most famous film was âA Nightmare on Elm Streetâ which for me was a crazy film, considering I had a girlfriend who lived on Elm Street in The Last House on the Left which dead ended into a grave yard! Talk about havingÂ scared teenage years! I wonder what ever happened to herâŚ
Barker was born in Liverpool England. He went to Liverpool University and studied English and Philosophy. Primarily an author but quickly became involved in Producing as well as Directing. He Directed âHellraiserâ 1987
âNightBreedâ 1990 âLord of Illusionsâ 1995 he produced âHellraiser II-IIIâ âCandymanâ 1992 âThe Midnight Meat Trainâ 2008 (Awesome film, watched it twice in a row!) as well as was co-creator of a series of Video games.
He also was involved in brining âRazorlineâ to life in a Comic book form. This was produced in conjunction with Marvel Comics. Barker has written over a dozen novels from 1985 to the present.
Probably his most famous work is âWeaverworldâ 1987, which rumors are always floating around that he will eventually bring this to the big screen. Little know is one of his first books âThe Thief of Alwaysâ 1992 was written as a childrenâs book, kind of… He is probably the most well rounded artists in the Horror Entertainment industry to date. (Next to me of course!)
In 2003, The Davidson/Valentini Award at the 15th GLAAD Media Awards. This award is presented “to an openly lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender individual who has made a significant difference in promoting equal rights for any of those communities”
This kind of hit me about as equally as when I found out Freddy Mercury was gay. (Yeah, I had no idea.) I mean these guys were really REALLY happy!